Science   >>   Critical Thinking   >>   Secondary

Astronomy

Description
This website is set up by NASA’s Planatary Data System. It offers a variety of information in the form of colorful graphics and write-ups on the Planets. It is very easy to navigate. It provides authentic objects and specimens: Students get to see the planets in real life and color. (In addition to the planets, you will be able to find images of small bodies Marina 10, Viking 1 & 2, Voyager 1 & 2, Magellan, Galileo, Hubble and the Space Shuttle.) They will also be able to locate specific information about each planet such as its size and its special characteristics. It has a wealth of information on all aspects of the Planetary System and instruments used to study it. This website certainly promotes scientific literacy and invites the student to participate in the on-going discoveries about the planets. It also has a downloadable CD-ROM.
Appeal and User Friendliness
The site is easy to navigate and everything is literally just a click away. Each picture has a link to information about the picture. There is also a glossary where they can find out the definitions of terms used in the description of different planetary objects.

 
Astronomy

Description
From it’s design, this website is geared towards giving information to students and teachers about specific parts of the earth as seen from the different satellites in it’s orbit. It provides tips for teachers on how to teach the different aspects of the Earth. It serves as a very good information source on topics such as remote sensing, hurricanes, the earth’s satellites etc.
Website
ceos.cnes.fr:8100/cdrom-98/astart.htm (website no longer active)

 
Earth/Environmental Science

Description
This free website is a rich source of information on global wildlife migration, a unique topic. It has a series of lessons on wildlife migration and seasonal changes. Students will be able to connect with researchers who are tracking animal migrations north and south. Students will be able to locate up- to-date information on the migration of different animals such as bald eagles, monarch butterflies, sea turtles, songbirds, peregrine falcons and loons at different seasons. Student will also be able to enter their own information and be part of an ongoing scientific exploration. Journey North allows students to interact directly with scientists. They can participate in current scientific research on problems yet to be solved. Younger students will need teacher or parent supervision. Lessons in math and science also add to the richness of the site and a Journey North manual can be ordered at 1-800-965-7373.
Appeal and User Friendliness
Extremely easy to navigate. Colorful and creative website. From the homepage, access different topics including Today’s News, How to Use Journey North and Report your Sightings.
Sample Problem
Students can participate the second year of a remarkable odyssey for the conservation of endangered whooping cranes! Starting in 2001, eight young chicks were followed on their first journey south to a new home for whooping cranes—with an ultralight airplane to lead them. They had no adult whooper parents to show them the way because whoopers have not lived in the eastern US for over a century. Follow and possibly help track their migration routes.

 
Environmental Science

Description
The Envirolink Network is a non-profit organization, which has been providing access to thousands of online environmental resources links since 1991. It is a rich source of information for students and teachers on topics such as ecology, the marine environment, pollution, and endangered species to mention a few. It has a collection of different websites where more information on specific information as well as teaching materials can be obtained. It also has a forum where students and teachers are invited to participate in critical discussions on current events such as causes of pollution in different states in America. There is also a search engine which can be used to obtain even more specific information on any topic in environmental issues.
Appeal and User Friendliness
This website is easy to navigate. Links to websites on Environmental issues such as air quality, climate change, and ecosystems to mention a few, are located on the homepage and can be accessed by just clicking on them.
Sample Problem
From the resources listed by topic on the homepage, click on Environmental Disasters, and from the new menu, select a subtopic such as Earthquakes. Under earthquakes, click on ‘Educational Resources’ to locate a list of websites where specific information can be obtained on earthquakes including virtual tours of earthquakes and regions affected by them.

 
Mega Website: National Geographic

Description
Children, parents and teachers will enjoy this colorful and very informative website. It is has a plethora of links to different areas and a search engine to aid navigation of different topics covered in the website. This website is set up by the National Geographic Society and has information about the Society, its objectives, its magazines and TV program. It offers many opportunities for children of different grade levels to research different earth science, environmental and geographical issues. It also has specific information for parents and teachers. It is a website that promotes scientific literacy and inquiry. It also encourages the student to think independently and critically about environmental and earth science issues through the activities such as games and brainteasers about animals that live in the desert. Each month, it features an endangered species and includes all information about this species.
 
This site also offers a large spectrum of teaching materials for different subjects concerning earth issues. For children, the games, cartoons, audio and videos, not to mention coloring books will not only be fun but also very educational.
Appeal and User Friendliness
This is fun site to navigate. It has many clickable icons, that access necessary information on topics. To get to the students section from the homepage, click on students. On the new page select any topic of interest. A click on any specific topic locates more information on activities, news on ongoing research in that area and lots more.
Sample Problem
Click on student, then under science, click on Hubble Space Telescope to see the telescope in outer space. Click on different parts of it to know their functions.

 
Science Mega Site

Description
he Children’s Museum of Indianapolis website is set up basically to augment or the support the museum’s activities but will also serve as a very good resource for parents, teachers and students. The site has information about bones, dinosaurs, and the circus. Their exhibits are useful in teaching science and will be lots of fun for students.
 
Among the contents of the high-tech section of the site are background information and a Quicktime Video on the different bones in the body, how they are linked to each other and what their functions are. Other online and offline activities include activities on balance, colors and patterns (camouflage), movement, and evolution theory. This website can be used as a classroom resource/activity, or as a follow-up to a classroom lesson. It is bound to jump start creativity, and critical thinking skills in students of all ages.
Appeal and User Friendliness
An easy to navigate interactive website.
Sample Problem
Click on Paleo Prep Lab, then click on ‘dinosaur facts’ in the Dinosphere to be able to see a fossil of Bucky, the first juvenile T-Rex ever discovered on Earth.

 
Science Mega Site

Description
This website is supported by the Discovery Channel Network and it offers a lot of options to students, teachers and parents. Students will be able to find lots of links for Homework help in different subjects and teachers and parents will be able to find lesson plans and sample activities to perform both at school and at home. The categories include learning experiences for students in Grades K-5, 6-8, 9-12. Featured lesson plans in science include Astronomy/Space, Earth science, Life science and many other topics. The site also includes learning activities games and puzzles that could be done at home or in class.
Appeal and User Friendliness
Click on For Students and locate Science Fair Central. This portion of the website provides everything students need to know to create a science fair project. A handbook and project ideas provide excellent guidance.
Sample Problem
Even though this is a huge website it is extremely easy to navigate. For example in the For Students section, there are easy links to Science in Action, where you can follow students who have won the Discovery Channel Science Contest and have gone on exciting expeditions all over the world.

 
Science Mega Site

Description
This site is for everyone who likes to have fun and learn a lot at the same time. It has a lot of information on a myriad of issues. One of the good things about the site is that it also offers the children the chance to experience these physics, chemistry phenomena first-hand. Children learn by discovery and this site has a lot of practical experiments that can be conducted at home with or without an adult, that teach a variety of interesting things. It certainly invites the children to think critically about these phenomena and stimulates further analysis and investigation.
Appeal and User Friendliness
The site is very easy to navigate and is interactive. It also has a forum where children can ask specific questions and have them answered by experts.
Sample Problem
Is it possible to make a battery out of a vegetable? Yes it is! And this site has a step by step procedure on how to do this as well as a host of other experiments that test the validity of similar scientific phenomena in physics, chemistry, astronomy etc. The experiments are labeled Edible or Inedible!
Website

 
Science Mega Site

Description
This website is a treasure for both adults and students. It is an outstanding free education portal for K-12 schools that offers a redesigned, easy-to-use interface to deliver age-appropriate curriculum content selected by experts, searchable lesson plans, class projects, online references and homework help. It covers all topics taught in school and is very easy to navigate. It contains activities that will stimulate not only curiosity but also creativity and critical thinking as students are taken through real life situations and virtual tours of different parts of the world. Additional features include free e-mail services, education updates from each state, kid-safe search tools, and a special resource sections for teachers and administrators with online guides and discussion groups. The site also offers links to recommended suppliers of educational products and services and a free weekly newsletter.
Appeal and User Friendliness
This is an interactive website and all information is easily accessible with just a click on the topic of interest.
Sample Problem
Kids get to go on online virtual tours to any part of the world and are given information on that location. For younger kids, real-life decision making in critical conditions in the form of games and puzzles are available. They can also get tips on how to take notes, organize study times, and listen in class!
Website
www.aolatschool.com (website no longer active)

 
Science Mega Site

Description
This mega website has a lot of information for children and adults of all ages on many different subjects. These subjects include life, physical and earth science, literature and language arts. The well-designed courses include a variety of student investigations, pictures and maps that can be downloaded for reports, scheduled online discussions with experts, teacher resource guides, and links to recommended Web sites organized by topic. However, it is a subscription based website and subscription will be necessary in order to enjoy all aspects and benefits of the website.
Appeal and User Friendliness
This is an easy website to navigate.
Sample Problem
There are many different sample activities for each topic or subject discussed. They include experiments that can be carried out at home and with or without adult supervision.
Website
www.beyondbooks.com (website no longer active)

 
Science Mega Site

Description
This website is a treasure trove of information in all subjects for all ages. It includes a full spectrum of quality Internet services with online projects, research collections, tutoring programs, HomeworkCentral resources and standards-based Web links in every content area. Some of the links are to the National Geographic website, which has lots of activities for children. These activities include games, virtual tours and trivia questions on different topics in Life, Earth, and Environmental Science.
Appeal and User Friendliness
This website is easy to navigate.
Sample Problem
Play games and answer trivia questions as you make your way through the National Parks of America. Each question that is correctly answered either brings you to a New Park or closer to food supplies for the Pandas.
Website
www.bigchalk.com (website no longer active)

 
Science Mega Site

Description
Boxermath is a fee based or subscription based website with lots of curriculum ideas for teachers and practical problem solving topics for students in math. It contains a lot of tutorials, which are content correlated to state standards, diagnostic tests, self-paced lessons, and interactive activities.

 
Science Mega Site

Description
This is a website that is connected to many other websites that contain very useful curriculum material for teachers and also lesson plans for different subjects. These materials on science and math and other subjects could jump start creativity, problem solving and critical thinking. It is a fun.
Appeal and User Friendliness
This is an easy website to navigate.
Sample Problem
Teachervision, Funbrain, Family Education Network, and online atlas, encyclopedia, dictionary and almanacs.
Website

 
Science Mega Site

Description
This website instructs teachers how to use the web in the classroom to conduct research. It is a fee based website that has not only the lesson plans for various topics such as science, math, language arts but also has activities that kids can do online. These activities are bound to sharpen scientific research skills and stimulate curiosity and interest in the different subject areas.
Sample Problem
Dinosaurs: What are they and where did they come from? This section has activities surrounding the appearance and disappearance of dinosaurs. Kids also get to ask expert scientists about various topics.
Website
www.onlineclass.com (website no longer active)

 
Science Mega Site

Description
Study Works Online is a free learning site to help students discover math and science concepts traditionally taught from grades 7-12 through a variety of online investigations and creative learning activities. These include online strategy and eye-hand coordination games that are played against the computer, logic problems, and weekly puzzles and there is a large selection of explorations and demonstrations grouped by content, such as proving the Pythagorean Theorem visually. The site also includes news stories about math and science, homework hints, online tests, and links to related Web sites.
Sample Problem
Calvin wants to ride his new car to Joe’s house, but there is one problem. Calvin’s car has four flat tires. In fact, his tires are flat in four places, because the car has square wheels! Believe it or not, one of these two bumpy paths would give Calvin a smooth ride on his square-wheeled car. Can you guess which one? Click on the one you think will work.
Website
www.studyworksonline.com (website no longer active)

 
Solar Energy

Description
This is a useful site for information on solar energy, how to harness and use it for household activities. The SolarNow Project is set up by the United States Department of Energy and it’s focus is on educating the public about the use of alternative energy sources. Its main emphasis is on photovoltaics. It is a good site for teachers and students. The site has a “Kids Corner” with a glossary of terms. There are also two activities that should be suitable for elementary school kids (i.e., the solar oven). Teachers can get information on solar energy, learn more about an actual solar energy system, obtain information about teacher workshops and find out about SolarNow’s educational resources.
Appeal and User Friendliness
All information in and on this site is accessible on the homepage. Each topic is a link to further information.
Sample Problem
What stores energy best? How can I make an oven out of a Pizza box?
These are samples of the experiments that are included on the web site. Each experiment comes with specific instructions and guidelines. It also offers provides an analysis of the experiments.